Press Releases

Greenbrier Reduces Size of European Operations

LAKE OSWEGO, Ore., Jan. 27 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- The Greenbrier Companies, Inc. announced today it has reduced the scale of its European operations to adjust to present market conditions and improve financial performance. Cost reduction measures have been enacted both in the company's German and Polish operations, including a decrease of approximately 200 personnel, or about 20% of the workforce, and consolidation of certain operating, finance and marketing activities. Most of the affected employees were located at the Company's factory in Swidnica, Poland. German operations are being restructured to focus primarily on sales, marketing and certain technical activities. The move also includes a reduction of capital expenditures at the factory in Poland as part of a broader plan for profitability in Europe. Through these measures, the Company expects annual savings of approximately US $4.5 million.

William A. Furman, president and chief executive officer of Greenbrier, said: "Greenbrier remains committed to being an industry leader in the European marketplace. Over the past three and one-half years, Greenbrier has grown revenues in Europe from less than US $20 million annually to over U.S. $100 million. During this time, we have successfully penetrated major markets in Germany, France, Austria, the United Kingdom, Poland, Romania, and the Slovak Republic. However, despite these successes in top line growth, current operations have not met profit and efficiency goals. We are reducing revenue expectations in the current market environment, which will allow us to decrease overhead and improve financial performance at the factory level. These measures are consistent with our overall corporate objective of reducing general and administrative expense, based on lower worldwide rail supply revenue expectations. This comprehensive plan for profit attainment in Europe began in mid-2001 with the assignment of Richard McKay to head our European operations."

Richard McKay, president of Greenbrier Europe said, "Our WagonySwidnica manufacturing facility is a fully modernized, leading builder of freight wagons located in Southwest Poland near the German border. From this location, we are well-positioned to serve all major European markets. The current economic slowdown has reduced demand for our manufactured products in Europe, as it has in North America. We have been staffed at our Polish and German facilities to operate on a larger scale than the market environment will efficiently support. We will continue to integrate our German and Polish operations, as well as scale our business activities to achieve positive cash flow and profitability."

The Greenbrier Companies, headquartered in Lake Oswego, Oregon, is a leading supplier of transportation equipment and services to the railroad industry in North America. Greenbrier builds new railroad freight cars in the U.S., Canada and Mexico, and repairs and refurbishes freight cars and wheels at eleven locations across North America. The company also builds new railroad freight cars and refurbishes freight cars for the European market through its manufacturing operations in Poland and various sub-contractor facilities throughout Europe. At Greenbrier's Portland, Oregon manufacturing facility, it builds ocean-going barges for the maritime industry. Greenbrier owns or manages a fleet of approximately 50,000 railcars.

Except for historical information contained herein, this press release contains forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995, including without limitation, statements as to expectations, beliefs, and future financial performance. These forward-looking statements are dependent on a number of factors, business risks and issues, a change in which could cause actual results to differ materially from those expressed or implied in the forward-looking statements. Such factors, risks and issues are set forth from time to time under "Forward-Looking Statements," in Management's Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations in Greenbrier's SEC filings and reports. Any forward-looking statement speaks only as of the date on which such statement is made. Greenbrier undertakes no obligation to update any forward-looking statement to reflect events or circumstances after the date on which such statement is made.


SOURCE: The Greenbrier Companies, Inc.

Contact: Mark Rittenbaum of The Greenbrier Companies, Inc.,